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The Last Word

News/Business. (2013)

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01:00:00

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San Francisco, CA, USA

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Virtual Ch. 787 (MSNBC HD)

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mpeg2video

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ac3

PIXEL WIDTH
1920

PIXEL HEIGHT
1080

TOPIC FREQUENCY

Us 8, South Carolina 8, Paul Ryan 7, Bob Dole 6, America 6, Cia 6, Fred Thompson 5, Sanford 5, Iraq 5, Stephen Colbert 5, Phillips 4, Charleston 4, Marco Rubio 4, Donald Rumsfeld 3, Usaa 3, Lowcountry 3, Pepsi 3, George Bush 3, Elizabeth Colbert Busch 3, Dick Cheney 3,
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  MSNBC    The Last Word    News/Business.  (2013)  

    March 19, 2013
    10:00 - 11:00pm PDT  

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statement made by the iraqi government, the statement by the iraqi government yesterday that iraq has no weapons of mass destruction and is not developing any? >> they're lying. next? >> it is not knowable if force will be used, but if it is to be used, it could last, you know, six days, six weeks, i doubt six months. >> i doubt six months. >> my favorite donald rumsfeld assertions were how specific he tried to get about these things they were making up. 11 days into the war, he was asked by abc if he was surprised american forces hadn't found any weapons of mass destruction. his response, not at all. we know where they are. they are in the area around tikrit and baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat, yes, north, south, east and west somewhat. we know exactly where they are.
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donald rumsfeld is running from that history, having said things like that, made claims like that, not in passing, but as a case to the american people why we had to wage this war. donald rumsfeld has been running from what he did for years now. in 2006 while the war was at its height, a 27 year veteran of the cia confronted him about the north, south, east, west claim at a public forum. >> it appears that there were not weapons of mass destruction there. >> you said you knew where they were. >> i did not. i said i knew where suspect sites were. >> you said you knew where they were, near tikrit, near baghdad, and north, south, east, west of there. those of your words. >> my words were that -- no, no, no, wait a minute, let him stay one second. >> this is america, huh? go ahead.
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>> you're getting plenty of play, sir. >> i'd just like an honest answer. >> i'm giving it to you. >> these guys have been trying to run away from what they did since they did it. it is a revisionist project to make us think they didn't screw up. we should look at them as the today in washington, the latest skirmish in the republican civil war was fought by rand paul against rand paul. >> the republicans are just
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totally bam booze he willed now. >> the gop ordered an autopsy. >> 98 page autopsy. >> of its performance in the last election. >> they don't understand they're being suckered. >> it is all about outreach, not policy. >> to be clear, our principles are sound. >> outside of pushing for comprehensive immigration reform. >> if you wish to live and work in america. >> kentucky senator rand paul. >> we will find a place for you. >> raising his national profile. endorsed a path to citizenship. >> we will find a place for you. >> i am now a single issue voter against amnesty. >> it is all completely incoherent. >> we know we have problems and we aren't going to deport 12 million illegal immigrants. >> the opposition to the iraq war led to a crushing defeat for republicans. >> ten years to the day aftershock and awe. >> does political fallout remain?
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>> support for the war seems to fall down party lines. >> it is a tough issue for the gop. >> more than 32,000 wounded. >> 130,000 iraqi civilians. >> 22 veterans commit suicide every day. >> was it worth it? >> we have no ambition in iraq except to remove a threat. >> sold it to the american public. >> every measure has been taken to avoid war. >> failures of the iraq war are still a list in progress. rand paul began today sort of in favor of immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship and ended the day absolutely opposed to a path to citizenship. it was just another day in the life of a right wing republican trying to find exactly where he stands as the ground shifts under the republican party on immigration reform and other issues. rand paul began his day with a
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speech to the u.s. hispanic chamber of commerce in which he tried to please his audience without getting too specific. >> i think the conversation needs to start by acknowledging that we aren't going to deport 12 million illegal immigrants. if you wish to live and work in america, then we will find a place for you. >> after the associated press based on advanced copy of rand paul's speech reported that he endorsed a path to citizenship, senator paul ran away from that as fast as he could. >> i'm not offering a new pathway to citizenship. i am simply saying you can get a work visa and you can get in the normal line. i am not creating a new line for citizenship. >> rand paul's wobbling on immigration left some republicans very confused. >> rand paul is being more conservative than maybe a rubio, and now forget it. he has a lot of people scratching their head, me included. >> today rush limbaugh continued to scratch his head and
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continued his crusade against the republican national committee's effort to rebrand the party. >> the republicans brand, whatever, image problem, and what they're going to have to do is change the way they are talked about. they don't have to change who they are. these rebranding efforts never work. they never fool anybody. >> nia, it is hard for a republican trying to figure out immigration reform, what should i say today about it. seems the ap got an early draft of the speech, seemed to tell them he was for a path to citizenship, now he is not. >> they used language that he was implicitly for citizenship. we have seen this with jeb bush who was for citizenship, in his
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book, don't know if he wrote it, seemed to not be for citizenship, now he is for citizenship. saw it with marco rubio, his speech at cpac, immigration reform, he doesn't even mention it. we are seeing there's a wing in the republican party when they hear citizenship, they here amnesty. and that's why they're in trouble with this. if you look at the polls, most republicans actually want a comprehensive immigration reform, something like 60%. you see this dance that these figures have to take around the issue. >> sam, it is not like rand paul didn't know. this speech was on his schedule awhile. he knew his day was coming and he was going to be talking about this in front of this audience. it seems easy to keep your story straight. >> you would think so if
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planning the speech. keep in mind where he came from not even a year or two years ago. in 2011 he cosponsored a bill that outlawed birth right citizenship. children wouldn't be granted citizenship. 2010, he ran for the senate, he had a proposal calling for underground electrical fence under the border to prevent people crossing. >> underground electrical fence? >> yes. >> presumably in addition to an above ground electrical fence? >> above ground was more expensive. this would detect people crossing the border. >> something he invented himself? >> he was all detailed, said i will guide you. but the point i am trying to make, he started very, very, very far to the right and i think he is reflecting the movement of the party at large and they're not there where they're comfortable with the words pathway to citizenship. they want to say they're for it
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because they realize the political ramifications, but they know if they were to use those words, they would be in trouble. >> want to tie it to border security. the issue with that, the border is pretty secure. the illegal immigration is net zero. states like arizona, apprehension rate is down 80% in terms of the people they are catching. >> i give him credit for trying to find that middle ground. but if you're going to do the speech, stick with the themes of the speech, not move back and forth because then you become the story and not the policy maker. >> rand paul is an objectless on in the repositioning republicans are trying to figure out. he is repositioning himself every day. he is in his heart like his father not a republican, a libertarian. and libertarians are more opposed to what most republicans stand for than in agreement with them. for example, abortion. listen to rand paul on that subject. >> so just to be precise, if you believe life begins at conception, which i suspect you do believe that, you would have
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no exceptions for rape, incest, the life of the mother. is that right? >> well, i think that once again puts things in too small of a box. what i would say is there are thousands of exceptions. you know, i'm a physician and every individual case is going to be different and everything is going to be particular to that individual case and what's going on with that mother and medical circumstances of that mother. >> sam, if i heard correctly, the guy who is opposed to all abortions thinks there are i believe thousands of exceptions? is that what i just heard? >> yes. i mean, it is tough to figure out what he was getting at there. clearly -- on the one hand wants to call it a white and black issue, there's absolute and can't compromise. on the other hand, there's a thousand shades of gray. you can't do that in the republican party today. i agree, it is an incredibly complex issue when you grant
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exemption, for the safety of the mother, economic situations, a variety of issues. if you're in the republican party, that's an absolutist issue. you are either for abortion or against abortion and there aren't lines you can draw. >> at this point, there are so many versions of the republican party, libertarian, government get off my lawn and things like that. there's the evangelical wing, tea party wing. that's why you see -- i think that's the case with marco rubio. sometimes he sounds like a moderate republican, sometimes like a tea party republican. this is a fight we're going to see politicians have with themselves and also with the larger party. >> goes back to your rebranding issue which is that you want to come off as a sensitive, compassionate politician, while at the same time sticking to core principles that aren't exactly popular or necessarily compassionate. it is difficult to have it both ways. >> nia, where do you think we
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are in this re-branding story? is this the beginning of a six month period of confusion? is this going to be so confusing? >> only six months? >> or could it be just so confusing that republicans can't take it any more by the end of the week and say stop it, we're going back to everything we said last year. >> if you listen to rush limbaugh, he is singing a different tune, if you listen to rand paul. part of the problem, it is leaderless. this is a fight that has to be fought out in 2016, and in some ways in 2014. my goodness, sit back, grab your popcorn. >> it is the boomerang effect of gerrymandering where you have a number of republicans whose only in primary, outside of that, they're golden. that makes it hard to do re-branding project. >> thank you for joining me. >> two nights in a row.
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>> you were a big hit last night. a former cia agent tells us what went wrong in the intelligence community as president bush worked his way to launching the iraq war exactly ten years ago tonight at this very hour. and in the "rewrite," what happens to the failed saviors of the republican party? hint, does the phrase reverse mortgages mean anything to you? later, congressional republicans wandered into a political twilight zone that only ezra klein can explain. he joins me coming up.
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this program's choice for the nobel peace prize went back to school today. the 15-year-old girl shot by the taliban last year for speaking out for the rights of girls to receive an education started at a high school for girls in
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england today. in a statement, she said i am excited that today i have achieved my dream are going back to school. i want all girls in the world to have this basic opportunity. i miss my classmates but i am looking forward to meeting my teachers and making new friends in birmingham. she and her family will be staying there while she continues outpatient treatment. up next, ten years ago at this time george bush announced the start of the iraq war. an intelligence analyst working in the cia then will tell us what it was like dealing with dick cheney in those days. [ phoebe ] stress sweat. it's different than ordinary sweat.
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at this very moment ten years ago, and i do mean this very minute. at 10:16 p.m. on march 19th, 2003, the president of the united states said this. >> my fellow citizens, at this hour, american and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm iraq, to free its people, and to defend the world from grave danger. >> it turned out the world was not in grave danger. a cia analyst working in the counter terrorism center at the time says now the prewar
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intelligence on iraq, quote, turned out to be bogus and that her job was, quote, keeping the really, really terrible versions of it out of our analysis. joining me now, that former cia analyst, nada bakos. thank you for being here. >> thank you for having me. >> you published this article describing what it was like working in the cia at that time, and all the pressure you were under from the vice president's office. i wanted to show you this clip that you mentioned from "meet the press" back then. you mentioned it in your article. let's look at it again. >> we know he's out trying once again to produce nuclear weapons and we know that he has a long standing relationship with various terrorist groups, including the al qaeda organization. >> in your article, you say were
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you shocked when you heard him say that. tell us about that. >> so we had already written an assessment talking about the relationship between iraq and al qaeda and we found there was no substantial connection. how it played in the press and statements made at the time gave the impression there possibly was and that intelligence backed that up. and that was my concern at the time was that the american public would walk away from that thinking there was a connection. and that we had actually found that. >> you and your team were under such pressure from the vice president and scooter libby that you actually ran mock meetings with them in your office where some of you played dick cheney and someone else played scooter libby grilling your team.
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you went through exercises like that just in preparation of having meetings with them. >> right. i had -- i worked with an amazingly dedicated team. i had a branch chief who understood the questions the administration was probably going to ask. so we did a mock briefing just to prepare us in case the questions would arise that, you know, would lead us down a rabbit hole. you know, you could have a lot of hypotheses that you go over and over and over again, and eventually moving away from the objective truth as we knew it at the time. she wanted us to be prepared for the answers and felt solid on the basis of our intelligence. >> you talk about how challenged you felt by the vice president's office on this. in your piece you write, in the abstract, challenging cia's analysis is a good thing, agency analysts get stuff wrong as evidenced by saddam's wmd.
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why was it problematic to be interfered with and affect this situation? >> from our optic, looking at the possible iraq, al qaeda connection and that there wasn't one, we were laying out the case as exactly as we found it. there was, we felt, no stone unturned. so to cherry pick through some of the information that maybe alluded to a possible connection and then leaving out the other pieces of information that brought to light that there was no connection was hugely problematic, and i think you have to look at it in total. so without doing that, you can come away with the assessment that yes, there was some kind of unfounded connection between the two organizations, but the cia is not a policy making body and i think it's important for history to determine for us in this instance, you know, mixing the two is hugely problematic. >> you go on to write about what it was like working there after
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the war started and you find yourself under a whole different kind of pressure, which was in effect a retroactive search for justification for the war. you say they were so frantic to respond to white house questions that supporting the actual war effort took a back seat. tell us about that. >> so, you know, the piece that i actually write about was just from my personal perspective, talking about how they couldn't even spare me at that moment or the boss's boss couldn't to do weapons training, so we are all hands on deck answering the questions. well after the invasion, i was still working as an analyst, answering the questions in 2004, historical questions. so it took a long time for us to be able to walk away from that and really focus on what was happening in iraq, and we were doing both simultaneously. >> what was it like to be at the cia during what was probably the slow dawning of the realization that no, there are no weapons of mass destruction in iraq? >> so i was in iraq shortly
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after the invasion. i was there in june of 2003 and it was becoming somewhat clear that there was not an immediate -- nobody was finding an immediate connection to any kind of wmd. i was skeptical personally from my own opinion, i was skeptical about the invasion from the beginning. i thought if there's a reason to invade another country, having to make a case in front of the u.n. assembly doesn't seem like it is warranted. war should be obvious, the reason should be obvious. >> nada bakos, former cia analyst, thank you so much for joining us tonight. >> thank you. >> friday at 9:00 p.m., watch a special replay of hubris, selling the iraq war, followed by talking hubris. coming up, how losing presidential campaigns can lead to a rewarding career as a tv
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great television suffered a great loss yesterday. henry romell wrote for some of the best shows of our time, northern exposure, i'll fly away, homicide, life on the street, and two of show time's
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dram as, brotherhood and home land. i never had the pleasure of working with henry, but if i had, i would be a better writer for it. i know countless from northern exposure to home land whose performances were enriched by his writing. many television writers learned much from him. he won the esteemed prize for his writing on i'll fly away, an accomplished novelist, husband and father of two children and suffered a heart attack yesterday and died at the age of 65. his family and friends will miss him and you will, too. [ male announcer ] when it comes to the financial obstacles
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says he will do what he can to help his big sister win the general election. >> she's my sister. >> right. >> and i'm willing to, you know, break the jewel of my own creation to try to do something for her. like i'm not worried what it would do to me or my show to try to help her as myself, not as my character but as myself. you know, if people don't think that's the right thing to do, i don't care, it is my sister and i'm willing to help her. >> south carolina still hasn't decided who colbert busch's opponent will be. the field will be whittled down from 16 contenders to just two. former south carolina governor mark sanford won the most votes in the republican primary. because he did not win more than 50% of the vote, sanford will face a challenger in a runoff. it is too close to call who his
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challenger will be. the winner of that will face colbert busch in the general election may 7th. joining me now, gene robinson and political analyst, dick harpootlian, chairman of the south carolina democratic party. you have been manning the south carolina desk here. counting every one of these votes as they come in. stephen colbert's sister won with 151% of the voters. >> ran against a perpetual candidate who, you know, wasn't going to win. so she won. so this will be very interesting. she's an interesting candidate in her own right and has a shot at a very red state of winning a congressional seat. >> dick, is mark sanford maybe
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the only republican she could beat in that district? >> well, i think that he is not the only republican but certainly is the easiest target. he is by no means home. we prefer to run against him. he has not only the app latch and trail and promised term limits and is running again. the scandals of his governorship, ethical and moral are renowned in the state. i think he is a candidate of choice for us. >> let's listen to mark sanford talk about re-entering the world of politics. >> you know, you step in with more than a bit of fear and trepidation because you knew you blew it and you knew that everybody knows that you did, it's certainly been out there. i don't know whether i am going
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to win or lose this thing, i feel i am supposed to crawl back on the larger playing field that i stepped away from for a couple of years. >> gene, crawling back on field, something not triumphant -- >> what is he doing? can the man not find a job? we all remember how he left office the last time and it wasn't pretty. so he is apparently now engaged to his argentine sweetheart. take off, have a nice life. it mystifies me why he would say he wants to crawl back onto the playing field, not in triumph but in disgrace. >> dick, how is this sanford campaign playing down there? >> well, south carolina has been the butt of many jokes, many by stephen colbert. we have been the laughing stock of the country, this is just the latest chapter of the mark
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sanford humiliation tour. he somehow feels he has something to contribute in public life which he has never done in the last 20 years while he has been in public life. so again, we're embarrassed, humiliated, but believe elizabeth colbert busch can perhaps stop the pain. >> he made a very interesting choice, gene, he actually tried -- i'm going to let him tell the story, how he tried to talk his wife into running his campaign. >> let him tell it. >> first thing that came along when this larger question of race versus no race, would she run. there was talk of her running for this office. i don't think it could have possibly been anything more disruptive for our boys and frankly it would have been a
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circus to have a former husband and wife running, that would be crazy. so i met with her to make sure she wasn't interested and when she wasn't, i said still love to have you involved any way that you would like because, you know, she is an incredibly intelligent woman, knows campaigns and elections very well. >> gene, she turned down that offer. i don't understand this woman. >> so let's get this straight. if they had run against each other, that would have been crazy, if she had been his campaign manager, that wouldn't have been crazy? >> no. and his running now apparently is not crazy. >> it actually is a little crazy. let's get back to planet earth, it is crazy. so how is she going to react when she's asked about his candidacy in the coming weeks.
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>> dick harpootlian, what does elizabeth colbert busch have to do to win this? >> she has to do something none of the republican candidates did, explain who he is, remind them of his history, compare him to her. she's a business woman, she has run a business. he is born, rich son, son of a rich doctor, grew up on a plantation, has never had a real job, other than taking a government check the last 24 years or so. he has never earned a check. she on the other hand had businesses, she now is a renowned business leader in the lowcountry. she has created jobs, he hasn't. and i think the district conservative, no question about it, but they're not crazy. they've got to be crazy to vote this guy back into office again. >> gene, can a candidate's little brother who has gone off to new york and thrown in with that show business crowd
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actually help a candidate back in a district in south carolina? >> sure, sure. first of all, this is the lowcountry. the lowcountry is a little different. and second, he is from south carolina. he grew up there. he made it big in the big city. it is with those sort of fancy tv folk like you. but sure, he can help his sister. and again, dick made a good point about mark sanford. here is a guy with 100% name recognition running against people with zero name recognition and two-thirds of them voted for somebody else, i think there's a vulnerability here. >> what role would you like to see stephen colbert play in this campaign? >> he did a good job, couple weeks ago there was a dinner in charleston, i attended, he helped raise a couple hundred thousand dollars. he uses his celebrity and fame help his big sister raise money
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and get attention. i spent a significant amount of time with him at dinner the other night. the guy is bright. he is from charleston. nobody regards him being from new york and he is a state treasurer. something everybody admires. just his presence and words help her. by the way, i think everybody in charleston knows her as lulu. that's the nickname she grew up with, everybody knew her by that for years. she's from charleston, spent her life there, so has stephen. these are not outsiders coming in, these are folks that are known by the people of that district and i think he can help her simply by being there and helping her. he just shows up. >> thank you both for joining us tonight. coming up, congressional republicans are now in a twilight zone that only ezra klein can explain. and in the "rewrite," we can now see the future for the new saviors of the republican party, and that future is not in the white house. ♪ i am stuck on band-aid brand ♪
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oh, america hates losers and the most recent vice presidential losing candidate who will never be president is upside down in favor ability. paul ryan is viewed favorably by 35%. in republican voters, he dropped to 52% from a high of 83% last august when he was chosen to be the next losing vice presidential candidate who will never be president. paul ryan's budget twilight zone is coming up. the "rewrite" is next. plays a key role throughout our lives. one a day women's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for women's health concerns as we age. it has 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day 50+. when the doctor told me that i could smoke for the first week... i'm like...yeah, ok... little did i know that one week later i wasn't smoking.
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and one driving test yet to come. she'll need our most concentrated total effects ever. lucky for me, my finances aren't so tight i have to do commercials like failed republican candidate fred thompson. but when my day comes as it surely will, and i'm desperate to do reverse mortgage commercials, i won't have a chance of getting one unless i first run for president as a republican and lose. that is actually the surest way to book a national ad campaign as an actor. it all started with bob dole. to get his career in commercials started, first he lost the 1996 presidential campaign to bill clinton. then became a spokesmodel for a
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new pill that was a big game changer for older men. >> when i was diagnosed with prostate cancer, i was primarily concerned with ridding myself with the cancer. secondly, i was worried about side effects like erectile dysfunction, ed, often called impotence. >> bob dole, one of the most clever senators, made more money in another commercial that mocked his own viagra commercial. >> hi. i'm bob dole. and i've always spoken to you frankly, no matter what the subject. that's why i am eager to tell you about a product that put real joy back in my life. it helps me feel youthful, vigorous, and most importantly vital again.
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what is this amazing product? my faithful little blue friend, an ice cold pepsi cola. >> the revitalizing effects of pepsi right for you? check with your clerk and start living again. >> i feel like a kid again. >> the joy of pepsi! ♪ >> oh, that's what i love about bob dole, he is a great guy. anyone that's waiting for fred thompson to mock his reverse mortgage commercials should realize fred thompson doesn't have half the sense of humor bob dole has. fred thompson is still committed to the cause, still churning out reverse mortgage ads after all these years. >> you really ought to consider a reverse mortgage with aag. >> i don't know. looks like fred might be auditioning for a viagra
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commercial with that ultra hip facial hair he sports in the latest ad. the newest entry in the republican losing candidate turned pitch man group is the republican politician who actually tried to seize political ownership of 9/11. >> at the time we believed that we would be attacked many more times that day and in the days that followed. without really thinking, based on just emotion, spontaneous, i grabbed the arm of then police commissioner bernard carrick. i said bernie, thank god george bush is our president. i say it again tonight. thank god that george bush is our president. and thank god, and thank god that dick cheney, a man with his experience and his knowledge and his strength and his background
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is our vice president. >> now, the guy whose arm he grabbed, bernard carrick, police chief, he is in jail tonight. what you just heard from rudy giuliani, that's the kind of statement that could make all future endorsements worthless. but there's at least one company that doesn't think so. >> looking forward to your tax refund? so are identity thieves. they can steal your refund. happens to thousands of people every year. you have to be proactive when it comes to identity theft, especially during tax season. >> your identity needs protection. no one does it better than lifelock. >> identity thieves steal from everyone. you have to protect yourself. i protect myself with lifelock. >> now, remember when rudy giuliani was marco rubio? remember when he was the savior
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of the republican party? remember when he was going to be swept into the presidency in 2008 by linking every single campaign issue to 9/11? that was actually the same year that fred thompson was briefly the savior of the republican party, until he opened his mouth in a presidential debate, and without that reverse mortgage teleprompter was as slow and lifeless as a potential party savior has ever been. it is very unlikely that republican presidential loser mitt romney will ever find himself in position that his finances are so tight that he has to go pitch reverse mortgages on tv, but paul ryan, marco rubio, chris christie, we have seen your future and your future is reverse mortgages. and if you study the fred thompson commercials closely enough, one day you too will be able to say this kind of thing with a straight face.
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we do not have an immediate debt crisis. >> yes. you have entered the republican twilight zone. republicans are suddenly saying the national debt is not about to destroy life on this planet as we know it. even paul ryan agrees the debt is not crushing the life out of america. but the problem for republicans is they have insisted that the debt is the reason we need to do
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the kind of draconian budget cutting they have been proposing since president obama won the white house back for democrats. and look what happens to the conservative rationale for budget can you tell us when conservatives get more honest about the debt and deficit. a conservative columnist says about the new ryan budget, it sacrificed seriousness for seriousness by promising to reach budgetary balance, not over the long term as budgets 1.0 and 2.0 did, but in a ten year window. this is not going to happen, and more importantly there's no reason why it needs to happen. modest deficits are perfectly compatible with fiscal responsibility. talk about singing a new tune. and the conservative think tank, the american enterprise institute asks why does the budget need to balance in ten years? debt reduction doesn't require
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balance, just that the economy is growing faster than the debt, while the plan does put the debt to gdp ratio on a downward trajectory, it probably doesn't need to be quite as steep. ezra klein, this is a big deal, and you're here on this show to prove it is a big deal. you would never come out this late if this wasn't a huge deal. >> absolutely not. >> this is huge. the debt is the reason we have to do all these terrible things to medicare, which we republicans really love. it is just the debt is forcing us to do it. there's no rationale. >> if you read paul ryan's budget, and i have read every iteration, the first ten pages of the budgets is the same, this is a very apocalyptic, mad max scenario about the kind of debt crisis america faces. a crisis which the currency is completely devalued. we print and print money, inflation races up, financial markets collapse. it is compared to that where
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block granting, repealing obama care, voucherizing medicare, doing all of the things he does, in comparison to the debt crisis, all of that is fine, moderate, it is just a necessary painful medicine for a deep disease. if we don't have a debt crisis though, if the whole thing is not about deficit reduction but about making radical conservative reforms to the government, nobody likes it. that's what paul ryan found out in the first 10, 12, 15 years of his career when he didn't have the deficit reduction thing and pushed social security privatization and unfunded prescription drug benefit. nobody wanted the big conservative performance. it is only when he became the budget guy and cloaked them in deficit reduction that they took things like voucherizing medicare seriously. >> if you go back to the bob dole era in the senate, he was a reasonable republican, then considered a conservative republican, who was glad that we
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had a system called medicare and glad we had a system called social security, and he was concerned about its long term financing. he may have wanted social security and medicare to be less generous than democrats wanted it to be, but that was the size of the difference. i believe what you have is paul ryan philosophically is opposed to the existence of medicare and social security. and he could never say that. instead of making a philosophical point, he wanted to make it an accounting discussion. because of accounting problems, we have to do this. >> i think this is key to this. the debt operates under a weird set of rules in washington, that reporters and everybody else, reporters are able to openly cheer for deficit reduction, simpson-bowles, and they could never openly clear for obama care or the ryan bud